FDA Announces New Chief Counsel – Ralph S. Tyler

December 16, 2009

By Kurt R. Karst –      

Earlier today, FDA Commissioner Dr. Margaret Hamburg announced in an Agency-wide e-mail that Ralph S. Tyler has been appointed to serve as FDA’s Chief Counsel.  Mr. Tyler, who is currently serving as Insurance Commissioner of the State of Maryland, will officially take the reins from Acting FDA Chief Counsel Michael M. Landa on January 19, 2010.  Mr. Landa was appointed as Acting FDA Chief Counsel in April 2009 (see our previous post here) and will return to his position as Deputy Director for Regulatory Affairs at FDA’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition.  The Maryland Insurance Administration separately announced that Mr. Tyler’s resignation from the Administration will be effective on January 8, 2010.  Below is a copy of Dr. Hamburg’s e-mail announcing the appointment.

Dear Colleagues,

I am pleased today to announce the appointment of Ralph Tyler as our new Chief Counsel. Ralph is currently serving as the Insurance Commissioner of the State of Maryland and will be joining our team on January 19.

Ralph brings decades of experience to the post, having served as Chief Legal Counsel to Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley and as Baltimore City Solicitor. He was a partner in the international law firm Hogan & Hartson, L.L.P. Prior to that, he served in the Maryland Attorney General’s office from 1982 through 1996, holding the titles of Deputy Attorney General, Chief of Litigation and Assistant Attorney General.
He holds a B.A. from the University of Illinois, a J.D. from Case Western Reserve University, and a LL.M. from Harvard University.

As we welcome Ralph to the FDA, I want to express my sincerest gratitude to Mike Landa for serving these many months as our acting Chief Counsel. Except for a hiatus in the private sector midway through his career, Mike has been with FDA since receiving his LL.M. from New York University in 1978, and over the years became one of the agency’s most respected and admired leaders. Mike led OCC in advising both our medical device and veterinary medicine programs, served as deputy chief counsel, and as deputy director for regulatory affairs of the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition as well.

During the seven months that I have worked with Mike as acting Chief Counsel, I have come to rely on his poise, good judgment, and good humor as we have wrestled with all manner of policy and legal issues. When Ralph comes on board in mid-January, Mike will return to his position as Deputy Director for Regulatory Affairs at CFSAN. I know we all will continue to rely on Mike’s skill and expertise as we move into the new year.

Please join me in thanking Mike for his extraordinary contributions and in welcoming Ralph to his new post.

Margaret A. Hamburg, M.D.
Commissioner of Food and Drugs

Categories: FDA News